BJP sees ruse to attack CAG in 2G auction fiasco
The Bharatiya Janata Party Friday blamed the Congress-led government for the poor show at the 2G spectrum auction, saying the government was trying to attack the Comptroller and Auditor General (CAG).
"They are trying to clip the CAG's wings, trying to blame the CAG for their own failure," BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar said Friday.
"The CAG did not quote 2012 loss figures; they gave 2007 loss figures. If in 2007, it had been auctioned, you could have got so much money," he said.
The spectrum allocation occurred in January 2008; the CAG report was submitted in 2010. The Supreme Court ordered the cancellation of all 122 licences allocated in 2008 in February 2012.
Javadekar said that only 22 of the 122 licences earlier cancelled had been auctioned so far; even that has already fetched more than what was made for all 122 licences earlier, vindicating CAG's stand.
"Yesterday only 22 licenses were auctioned... 100 licenses have not yet been auctioned. Yet, what they got auctioning these 22 licenses is more than what they got from 122 licences; how can they claim the CAG is wrong. Had the UPA not failed in managing the economy, you would have got Rs.1,76,000 crore," he said.
"Government wants to hide its own failure, and attack the CAG to make it look like it is responsible for the mess, or shift blame to the Supreme Court or the TRAI. Because this government is neck deep in corruption, now they want all bodies to be crippled," he said.
The auction of 22 2G spectrum licenses Thursday garnered Rs.9,400 crore (USD 1.74 billion), opposed to expectations of as much as Rs.40,000 crore (USD 7.4 billion).
Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari had Thursday questioned the CAG, seeking to know how he had arrived at the presumptive loss of Rs.1.76 lakh crore, on account of the allocation of 2G spectrum in 2008.
Javadekar, meanwhile, blamed mismanagement of economy by the government for the poor response to the 2G auction.
"As we have said, this is the reason for the fiasco in the auction Thursday. It is because of failure of management of the economy by the UPA government, specially mismanagement of the telecom sector," he said.
The 2G licence allocation during former telecom minister A Raja's time in January 2008 had fetched the government Rs.9,500 crore.
The CAG had estimated the loss in 2G spectrum allocation to the tune of Rs.1.76 lakh crore.